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Testament - Dark Roots of Earth - 95%

Orbitball, July 27th, 2012

Finally, a 2012 release that isn't the pits. Testament belts out some intrinsically amazing melodic guitar here with a solid production sound, awesome leads/rhythms, deep vocals, and overall a must have to all thrash metal followers. Clocking in at a little over 51 minutes in length, this album is filled with so much diversity. I was appalled when I heard it. I'm glad that I invested my money in this release and you should too!

The rhythms are filled with so much variety. A lot of melodic riffs to the core, bar chord frenzies, tremolo picked overtures, and overall a very diverse album. Every musician on here exhibits enormous talent and deserves praise. Chuck Billy is going on strong on the vocal department and his voice suits the music just perfectly. Even on songs that have clean tone/acoustic guitar he still meshes his voice in to suit it just right.

Eric Peterson used to play just rhythm guitar way back when Testament just started years ago. Now he's among the ranks with Alex Skolnick on leads too. It's difficult to tell the difference between the 2 because both of them have enormous talent. It's good to hear an album that's a progression from the last one Formation of Damnation. I think that this one tops that one by far! Not enough good to say about Dark Roots of Earth!

Greg Christian is still in the lineup also after all of these years and I was surprised that Gene Hoglan filled in the drum department. Amazing musicians, all of them. Dark Roots of Earth's music is the most notorious that I've heard from Testament in a long time. Just so much melodies and I can't stress that enough. I'm a melodic death freak and it's weird to hear Testament amassing so many melodies on here.

Again, the production/mixing was just perfect. Everything meshed in well. The vocals didn't overpower the music by any means. The rhythm/lead guitars are well heard. The bass is audible too! The drums fit the music perfectly too. I think a lot of work went into recording this album. Not too much technology to make the album sound too "perfect". Just enough to get everything in sync as I've stated.

Thrash metal listeners had better hear me well about this Testament album. It is sheer notorious back to old school roots with original riffs, aggressive vocals, lead guitar frenzies, and overall a superb recording. You can check out a sound sample on Testament's website. Native Blood is the song to listen to. If you aren't convinced, then that's your loss because Testament does everything right in this whole album! Pick it up ASAP!